The lawsuit, brought by the Pacific Legal Foundation ostensibly to contest alleged discrimination against Asian American students, targets changes to the city’s expanding Discovery Program. It allows students attending low-income middle schools to receive an offer to one of the city’s elite high schools if they score just below the admissions cut-off on the Specialized High School Admissions Test.
Fortunately, a district judge ruled Feb. 25 that the preliminary injunction the plaintiffs sought to halt the plan was not warranted. But the Pacific Legal Foundation appears prepared to take its case all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court — whose composition and majority have recently shifted rightward, threatening the civil rights that many have fought so hard to achieve.
To me, this suit is as an affront to who I am as a lawyer, as an Asian American, and as a graduate of New York City’s public school system. It’s also one to which I feel a strange personal connection.